Those city-dwellers who complain about lack of space that restricts them from embarking on new ventures have to visit Pariyadath house at Govindapuram in Kozhikode district. In a 10-cent plot, Pariyadath Ganeshan has sensibly and creatively set up a dairy farm with 15 cows and 10 calves.
In the mornings, you can see people making a beeline for the house to buy milk. Around 150 families in the nearby areas solely rely on Pariyadath for milk. More than commercial gain, dairy farming is a passion for this man. It was his mother Kamala who gifted two Vechur cows to Ganeshan around seven years ago. In memory of his mother’s laudable gift he has not made any change in the cattle shed. He has accommodated his cows in a building constructed adjacent to the old cow shed.
Around two years ago a biogas plant was also constructed, so that the family does not have to depend on LPG for cooking needs. Automatic water bowls have been installed in the cattle shed to make water available 24x7. It was set up in 2011 by the Dairy Development Department as a demonstration.
A recipient of the best dairy farmer award of Calicut Agri-Horticulture last year, Ganeshan is particular about timely administration of vaccine. His attention has kept the cattle away from foot and mouth disease, which has caused a huge loss to dairy farmers in the Kozhikode district.
The cows rest on rubber mats and this is one reason which ensures cleanliness in his cattle shed. Dr Anand Moorkath, a veterinary surgeon at Olavanna, Kozhikode says, “Ganeshan is a devoted person who enjoys being with his cows. His success lies in his dedication and hardwork.”
Admitting that she has no previous experience in dairy farming, his wife Preeja says, “I cannot even think of a day without cows. We are that much associated with them.” For Ganeshan, a driver by profession, dairy farming is a family business.
His children Rahul, a class XII student at St Joseph’s Boys Higher Secondary School, and Rahan, a class I student at St Antony’s Higher Secondary School, find pleasure in helping their parents. “Fortunately, my children have no aversion to cows. They support me day and night to run the dairy farm,” says Ganeshan with a smile.
He strongly disagrees with those who look upon farming as a Herculean task. “For the past eight years I have suffered no loss on account of this venture. If we are wholly committed to something we will get the desired results,” he says.